The team at Science ATL has been doing some soul-searching. Earlier this year, before the pandemic, we embarked on a strategic planning journey to more clearly articulate our goals, metrics for success, and action steps to get there. This continues to be a work in progress, but we are pleased to share Science ATL’s key pillars: fostering a love of science, building community around science, and enabling equitable access to science learning opportunities throughout metro Atlanta.
As we imagine what kind of community we would like to build, and how best to expand equitable access to science learning, we recognize that we are missing voices – including Black voices – in crafting these strategies. Science ATL is committed to operationalizing equity and inclusion as part of our mission to build community around science, and we are committed to deepening our equity efforts with Atlanta’s Black community.
Starting in September, we are taking two steps to build a more equitable community: 1) we have joined the international Of/By/For All Change Network that supports civic and cultural organizations in becoming representative of, co-created by, and welcoming for their diverse communities; and 2) we are working with community engagement consultant Nasim Fluker and Purpose Possible to build organizational structures and initiatives built on sustained inclusion of community voices and input about community needs. These efforts will help us to review current initiatives and inform new ones through the lens of equitable access, and to amplify Black voices in our community related to science and STEM education.
Science ATL has always valued equitable access to science learning opportunities, and our work with Title I schools, in zip codes with low Child Well-Being ratings, and with diverse community partners has helped to build an inclusive community around science in Atlanta since our founding in 2014. But we are so excited to dive into more intentional work to listen to, engage with, and celebrate Black communities in Atlanta.
Special thanks to our friends and advisors who have helped to guide our thinking: Tjuan Dogan, Cheryl Kortemeier, Jamal Jesse, Natalie King, Ann Cramer, Kimberlin Bolton, Errika Moore, Sabrina Gomez, Daniel Aguirre, Ayana Gabriel, and David Jackson.